News for Insurers
Top stories summarized by our editors
5/26/2017

CDC researchers found a median of 11% of adolescents around the world smoked tobacco products, with a higher prevalence among boys than girls in 38 countries. The findings, reported in the agency's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report and based on 2012 to 2015 Global Youth Tobacco Survey data involving youths ages 13 to 15 in 61 countries, also showed that 50% of current tobacco users in 40 countries said they wanted to quit smoking.

More Summaries:
CDC, tobacco products
5/26/2017

AHIP sent a letter to Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, reinforcing calls for swift action to ensure continued funding of cost-sharing reduction payments and emphasizing the need for clarity on individual market provisions to keep insurers in markets and premiums down. AHIP President and CEO Marilyn Tavenner also called on Senate Republicans to guard against disruptions in Medicaid funding and retain protections for those with pre-existing conditions "including guaranteed issue, community rating, and barring pre-existing condition exclusions."

5/26/2017

CDC researchers found that Alzheimer's disease mortality rates in the US rose by 54.5% between 1999 and 2014. The findings in the agency's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report also showed that the rates of Alzheimer's patients who died in medical facilities dropped from 14.7% in 1999 to 6.6% in 2014, and the rate of those who died at home rose from 13.9% to 24.9% during the same period.

Full Story:
Reuters, CBS News, NBC News
More Summaries:
CDC, Alzheimer's disease
5/26/2017

Sens. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., Bill Cassidy, R-La., and John Cornyn, R-Texas, said Republican leadership staff and committee staff will be drafting health care legislation while the Senate is on break, and Johnson said a discussion draft should be ready for distribution among Republican senators after the recess. The staff will only be working on base language as senators have yet to reach final agreement, Cornyn noted.

Full Story:
The Hill
More Summaries:
Senate
5/26/2017

It is easy for companies to allow exempt employees to take time during the work day to exercise because they can make it up by staying late or coming in early. But legal experts say providing paid exercise time for hourly employees is more complex, and companies need a policy that covers how the benefit is implemented.

Full Story:
SHRM Online
5/26/2017

CBRE has banned employees from eating at their desks in their downtown Toronto office in an effort to promote better physical and mental well-being. The company opened the RISE Cafe, a wide open space for eating, and Ashley O'Neill, vice president of corporate strategy, said after eight months employees have embraced the change and are taking time to gather for meals and share ideas.

More Summaries:
open space, CBRE
5/26/2017

A study in the Journal of Personalized Medicine showed six of seven wearable tracking devices tested had a median heart rate error below 5%, which is the acceptable limit, but none had an error rate less than 20% for energy expenditure. Researchers suggested the higher error rates for energy expenditure may be because proprietary algorithms used in the devices do not work well on an individual basis.

More Summaries:
calorie burn, heart rate
5/26/2017

Researchers reviewed 19 clinical trials and found insufficient evidence supporting the efficacy of dietary approaches such as gluten-free food or fish oil supplements for treating children with autism spectrum disorders. The findings in Pediatrics should prompt larger and more rigorous studies on the benefits of such diet changes in youths with ASD, said researcher Zachary Warren.

Full Story:
HealthDay News
More Summaries:
ASD
5/26/2017

More than 40 US colleges and universities will participate in the Menus of Change University Research Collaborative, working to reduce purchases of red meat and increase fruits, vegetables and plant-based protein dishes by the end of this summer. The schools also will use their dining halls as labs, experimenting with ways to help students make healthy, sustainable food choices.

Full Story:
Business Insider
5/26/2017

Pharmaceutical Care Management Association President and CEO Mark Merritt says FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb's plan to increase competition in the drug market is on point. "[W]e applaud FDA Commissioner Gottlieb's decision to publish a 'watch list' of off-patent drugs. This move, which PCMA and others have long advocated, will help deter manufacturers from buying the rights to drugs like Daraprim for the explicit purpose of raising their price," said PCMA President and CEO Mark Merritt.